Q&A with Oklahoma Commit LHP William Dennis (Blue Valley Northwest, 2018)



Shon Plack
Kansas Scouting Director

William Dennis (Blue Valley Northwest, 2018) is a 6-foot-4 200-pound left-handed pitcher and has committed to Oklahoma. 

Dennis attended the PBR Future Games last summer where he was 86 mph with his fastball, sitting 82-85 mph.  His curveball has depth with swing and miss potential at 70-73 mph.  His change up has slight sink at 74-75 mph, with near fastball arm speed. 

Dennis will start his junior season at Blue Valley Northwest this spring.  Here is a look inside the recruiting process for William Dennis. 

 

PBR: What were your expectations about the recruiting process? Was it as expected? Easy/Difficult?

Dennis: I had good idea of what the process would be like based on information I've received. It wasn't difficult but I wanted to take my time and make the right decision.

PBR: Did location or distance from home play a factor in your decision?

Dennis: It wasn't the most important factor but the fact that I found the right fit for me and it's close to home is a bonus.

PBR: Where did Oklahoma first see you? How did your relationship develop with them?

Dennis: They saw me at the PBR futures games and someone also gave them feedback from another showcase I participated in. Coach Hughes and Johnson started showing interest and wanted to get me to Norman for a visit. I got a chance to spend quite a bit of time on campus, see some weekend games and tour all of the facilities.
 
PBR: Who is the best player you have faced in your state, and why?

Dennis: Several have impressed me that I have faced but I'd have to say my summer baseball teammate with Building Champions (Christian Franklin) is the most impressive player I have been on the field with- He can change games with is hitting and speed.  

PBR: What advice would you give to young baseball players striving to get where you are?

Dennis: Focus on what you need to do to get better and understand how to do it. It takes lots of hours to work at it. For me, that focus and those hours helped me to create a process which has been huge for me. Also, eat healthy, get plenty of sleep, and work with people that know your position.

PBR: What do you do in the off season to keep yourself in baseball shape and prepare for the upcoming season?

Dennis: I work with Bob Zimmermann (Premier Baseball) who has been a great pitching coach for me. He and I worked on developing and understanding my kinetic chain. I started right after the summer season ended and just finished up in February. I also strength train with Matt Hinkley, and John Renzi.

PBR: What is the most memorable moment in your baseball career to this point?

Dennis: Pitching last summer at Wichita State and getting the win. There were some coaches I really respect in the crowd and it felt good to have a solid game and to help my team win.

PBR: What do you like most about Oklahoma and what were the key factors in making your decision?

Dennis: Oklahoma has a great tradition as a baseball school and their athletic and academic support is incredible. Coach Hughes spent a lot of time with me and I felt really comfortable with what he is trying to do. Coach Johnson has a great reputation for working with some really good pitchers. He took me through his process and we just connected. The player energy was really good and they had confidence in the program and where it was going.

PBR: What other schools were on your short list before you made your final decision?

Dennis: There were a few but, at the end of the day, I knew Oklahoma was the best place for me.


PBR: When did the recruiting process really start to heat up for you? Was there a particular game or event that you feel turned the corner for you?

Dennis: The PBR Futures Games last summer really created a lot of exposure...and summer events with my Building Champions team also helped.

PBR: Preview your high school season for us. How do you feel your team will be? What are your expectations and goals?

Dennis: We have some really good returning players and experienced arms on the team. I expect us to compete with the best teams in the conference and have a good run in state.

PBR: Where do you play in the summer? And what has been your most memorable experience with them?

Dennis: I played with Building Champions. My most memorable experience will always be hanging out with my teammates and competing with them. We have a great group of guys and coaches on that team for sure. 

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